The Search for the Legacy of the USPHS Syphilis Study at Tuskegee is a collection of essays from experts in a variety of fields seeking to redefine the legacy of the infamous Tuskegee Syphilis Study. The essayists place the legacy of the study within the evolution of racial and ethnic relations in the United States. Contributors include two leading historians on the study, two former United States Surgeons General, and other prominent scholars from a wide range of fields.
Using 452 letters sent in 1990 to Wellesley College over a student petition objecting to the choice of Barbara Bush as the graduation speaker, this article explores how an attempt to expand the boundaries of elite women's political behavior created a cultural and symbolic battle that centered upon the content of education, women's “manners” and civility, and their implications for elite women's participation in the broader Hobbesian social contract for citizenship. The article demonstrates that social class in its gendered form (...) is essential to understanding the construction of citizenship. (shrink)
The presence of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study was palpable at the June 16, 2005, Food and Drug Administration’s Advisory Committee meeting on BiDil, a heart medication from the pharmaceutical company NitroMed that sought approval as the first race-specific drug. So ubiquitous is the restless and unsettled spirit of Tuskegee that it continues to hover over the African American public and the biomedical research/health care provider communities more than three and a half decades after the actual study “died.” No one invoked (...) the word “Tuskegee” in that dimly lit meeting room as BiDil gained the Advisory Committee’s approval. Yet its power was exerted even when it was not named. The FDA Committee’s chairman, Cleveland Clinic cardiology chief Steven Nissen, acknowledged this after the committee met: “We were putting [Tuskegee]…to rest.”. (shrink)
This article compares James M. Buchanan's and John Rawls's theories of democratic governance. In particular it compares their positions on the characteristics of a legitimate social contract. Where Buchanan argues that additional police force can be used to quell political demonstrations, Rawls argues for a social contract that meets the difference principle.
As these opening quotes acknowledge, the Prisoner’s Dilemma (PD) represents a core puzzle within the formal mathematics of game theory.3 Its rise in conspicuity is evident figure 2.1 above demonstrating a relatively steady rise in incidences of the phrase’s usage between 1960 to 1995, with a stable presence persisting into the twenty first century. This famous two-person “game,” with a stock narrative cast in terms of two prisoners who each independently must choose whether to remain silent or speak, each advancing (...) self-interest at the expense of the other and thereby achieving a mutually suboptimal outcome, mires any social interaction it is applied to into perplexity. The logic of this game proves the inverse of Adam Smith’s invisible hand: individuals acting on self interest will achieve a mutually suboptimal outcome. However, as this chapter illuminates, the assumptions underlying game theory drive this conclusion. (shrink)
The author shows Maritain's view of the place of political philosophy in the hierarchy of the speculative and practical sciences. Some criticisms of Maritain are also suggested, particularly in connection with democratic theory. --S. M. W.
This study is concerned with certainty and examines the work of Dewey for the light he sheds on this problem. Hart concentrates on the process of verification, the final stage of inquiry in Dewey's theory. He does this because he believes that, according to Dewey, through the process of verification we may attain "flexible" certainty. The first chapter discusses the background of the problem. The second chapter, "A Dewey Dictionary," contains passages selected from Dewey's works on about sixty topics which (...) Hart considers important for his later discussion. In the third chapter, a chronological account of the development of Dewey's theory of inquiry and his views on verification is meticulously presented. The fourth chapter is devoted to a systematic presentation of the place of verification in Dewey's philosophy. In the fifth chapter are the author's critical reflections: Hart holds that the basic principles of Dewey's theory cannot be justified but must be taken on faith. Here Hart does not seem sufficiently appreciative of Dewey's pragmatism. Dewey could answer: such principles are adopted because they are fruitful and will be maintained only so long as they continue to be fruitful. An epilogue concludes the study.—F. S. M. (shrink)
This paper examines how the concepts of utility, impartiality, and universality worked together to form the foundation of Adam Smith's jurisprudence. It argues that the theory of utility consistent with contemporary rational choice theory is insufficient to account for Smith's use of utility. Smith's jurisprudence relies on the impartial spectator's sympathetic judgment over whether third parties are injured, and not individuals' expected utility associated with individuals' expected gains from rendering judgments over innocence or guilt.
This paper analyses the National Populist Challenges to Europe’s Center Right. It assesses the cases of the UK, Germany and France. It poses three questions for Europe: How will political integration be achieved and maintained? What policies will foster economic inclusion in the Eurozone? And, third, what are the best means to achieve economic solvency and growth. The paper make a case that neoliberal economic policies over the past decades have undermined some nations' public sector and have also contributed to (...) tensions between the geographical east and west of Europe. (shrink)
This review essay of Economics Rules situates Dani Rodrik’s contribution with respect to the 2007–2008 global economic crisis. This financial meltdown, which the eurozone did not fully recover from before the Covid-19 pandemic, led to soul- searching among economists as well as a call for heterodox economic approaches. Yet, over the past decade, instead the economics profession has maintained its orthodoxy. Rodrik’s Economics Rules offers a critique of the economics profession that is castigating but mild. It calls for economists to (...) use more and diverse models without becoming wedded to any single model or an overarching vision. Yet Rodrik ratifies many of the benchmark models standard to orthodox economics and provides little ground for a fundamental rethinking of the discipline. This essay analyses the conservatism underlying Rodrik’s approach, which upholds general equilibrium theory and rational expectations underlying the efficient market hypothesis. It argues that the economics discipline’s scope-creep to maintain its applicability to all human decision-making, and its acceptance of all-inclusive utility functions, crowds out moral sentiments and civic virtue. Thus. it argues that rather than urging economists simply to be more cautious in their application of models to address particular social concerns, instead economists must recognise their discipline’s inherent limitations. (shrink)
Cohen states in the last sentence of his book that his analysis in no way presupposes the controversial labor theory of value. For him, the contradictions of capitalist production result from the fact that its function is to create exchange value. The statements themselves and the fact that they come very late in the book illustrate two distinctive characteristics of the work. First, Cohen espouses what he calls a technological interpretation of Marx. For him, the driving force of history is (...) the steady increase in the capacity of productive forces. Capitalism supersedes feudalism because of its ability to produce more. This technological interpretation of Marx is a theory of history because only certain production relations allow for the development and expansion of productive forces. For example, the levels of production attained by capitalism would be unthinkable within the context of lord and serf. Secondly, it is not really clear that Cohen is defending a theory of history until he formulates the primacy thesis in chapter 6 and elaborates upon it and the rise of capitalism in chapter 7. The primacy thesis states that the production relations of society are explained by the level of development of its productive forces. Cohen seems to dispense with what is often thought of as the philosophy of history in his discussion of the Hegelian roots of Marxism in the first chapter. He proceeds to analyze the distinction between productive forces and production relations and its consequences for the phenomenon of fetishism in chapters 2-5. These first chapters, and some later ones as well, seem to have the property of belaboring at great length elementary problems raised by the preface to the Critique of Political Economy, and Capital as well. For example, in his distinction between productive forces and production relations, Cohen says that the two must not be confused because relations hold between objects while forces are properties of objects. He says that a soldier who guards peasants tilling the soil is not part of the labor power because he fulfills a social rather than an economic need. Then he presents and elaborates upon a list of production relations. Cohen might have avoided the need for such involved analysis if he had clearly delineated the methodological import of his work in the introduction or the first chapter. I refer to his theory of functional explanation. It is, however, only after he has discussed the problem of base and superstructure in chapter 8 that he comes to examine functional analysis in chapters 9 and 10. Since functional explanation is the crux of his defence of Marxism as a theory of history, the reader deserves a more thorough preparation for it in an introduction. (shrink)
This paper critically engages Philip Mirowki's essay, "The scientific dimensions of social knowledge and their distant echoes in 20th-century American philosophy of science." It argues that although the cold war context of anti-democratic elitism best suited for making decisions about engaging in nuclear war may seem to be politically and ideologically motivated, in fact we need to carefully consider the arguments underlying the new rational choice based political philosophies of the post-WWII era typified by Arrow's impossibility theorem. A distrust of (...) democratic decision-making principles may be developed by social scientists whose leanings may be toward the left or right side of the spectrum of political practices. (shrink)
This essay represents a novel contribution to Nietzschean studies by combining an assessment of Friedrich Nietzsche’s challenging uses of “truth” and the “eternal return” with his insights drawn from Indian philosophies. Specifically, drawing on Martin Heidegger’s Nietzsche, I argue that Nietzsche’s critique of a static philosophy of being underpinning conceptual truth is best understood in line with the Theravada Buddhist critique of “self ” and “ego” as transitory. In conclusion, I find that Nietzsche’s “eternal return” can be understood as a (...) direct inversion of “nirvana”: Nietzsche celebrates profound attachment to each and every moment, independent from its pleasurable or distasteful registry. (shrink)
The article argues that Kant’s argument for ownership entails a standard of meaningful use by which property regimes can be evaluated: a regime must make it possible for usable objects to be meaningfully used. A particular form of fully communal ownership can satisfy this standard. Further, this form of communal ownership is compatible with Kantian freedom more broadly. I conclude that, if this is so, there is a great deal of space for further consideration of the rightfulness of diverse regimes (...) of ownership and exchange within a Kantian framework. (shrink)
In _Opposition to Philosophy in Safavid Iran_ Ata Anzali and S.M. Hadi Gerami offer a critical edition of what is arguably the most erudite and extensive critique of philosophy from the Safavid period. The editors’ extensive introduction offers an in-depth analysis that places the work within the broader framework of Safavid intellectual and social history.
In this brief and readable survey of the Reformation in Scotland, Professor Renwick succeeds in supplying both a sketch of the pre-Reformation church in Scotland, and an account of the entanglements of blood, religion and politics involving the Scottish throne. Frankly written from the Protestant point of view, the author demonstrates restraint in his treatment of the role of Mary Stewart, and gives an interesting narrative of John Knox's part in bringing about the reformation of the church.--S. M. W.
An essay in normative jurisprudence where the author is concerned with delineating and evaluating legal decision procedures. The appeal to precedent and equity are critically examined and found to be deficient. Wasserstrom proposes as an improvement a two-level decision procedure, which is like precedent in appealing to a rule of law as a necessary condition for deciding a case, and like equity "in that considerations of justice are directly relevant to the justification of any decision." He frankly admits that this (...) decision procedure is an improvement at the "price of becoming imprecise at certain crucial points." The discussion is informed throughout with an appreciation of both legal and philosophical treatments of the issues.--S. M. W. (shrink)
This weighty volume, both literally and figuratively, is an illustrated collection of quatrains in the style and tone of Fitzgerald's Omar. Though Iranian, the author writes a fluent English.--S. M. F.
This is a controlled and enlightening study of the concept of method during the Renaissance. The text is rich in quotations, supplemented by very numerous footnotes. By dint of letting the evidence speak for itself, Gilbert succeeds in deepening the understanding of the Renaissance and consequently of the significance of the methodological innovations that followed it in the 17th century.--S. M. W.
The third of three volumes that the author has devoted to the presentation and- development of his philosophy of the instant. In the present work, Life and Meaning, he examines the central and fundamental role of desire or "wanting" in human life. The author vigorously criticizes the rationalistic trend in philosophy which confuses life with thought, and which ignores or intellectualizes the role of desire. His account of the affective life will sometimes seem uncritical to the non-Latin reader.--S. M. W.